Multi-Generational Housing: Sharing Your Home With Family

What do you get when you combine a dismal job market, high housing costs, and elderly parents?

Multi-Generational Households

Multi-generational households are becoming more common these days with over 16 percent of the American population being a part of a household that contains at least two adult generations. These arrangements have plenty of benefits for all parties involved, but they can also be difficult to handle.

Pros of Multi-Generational Households

  • Keeps older people out of assisted living and children out of day care
  • Splitting utility, mortgage, and food bills
  • Family support when things are hard
  • Help with household chores, like cleaning and maintenance
  • Family relationships are strengthened

Cons of Multi-Generational Households

  • Possible lack of privacy and space
  • Relationship strains, misunderstandings
  • Challenge of juggling both elder-care and child-care duties
  • Expenses can mount if one party is unable to contribute equally

Before you enter into an arrangement to share your home with a parent or child, you must be able to have frank, open conversations about everything. You should put on paper how conflicts should be handled, how bills will be split, and how privacy should be respected. Try to talk about everything, from who cleans the kitchen, to when laundry can be done, and when the household needs to quiet down for sleep at night. Be willing to be flexible enough to try different arrangements if circumstances demand it. Compromise will be necessary from all parties, but by working hard and keeping communication lines open, it is possible to have a good relationship and share a home with family members of other generations.

If you need a realtor in the Orange County, California area, contact Judy Qualls at her office in Irvine, California.